2014 Letter to Students

This summer I will be doing two things with my blog: 1) I will reflect on the previous school year - What worked? What didn't work? What do I want to modify? 2) I will move my favorite posts from my old blogging platform to Blogger. Today's post is the letter I wrote to my students the night before the new school year, also known as New School Year's Eve.

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Sunday, August 17, 2014
 Dear New Student,

This morning is New School Year's Eve, and I am awake while the stars twinkle, the half moon lingers, and my 10 foot sunflower impatiently waits for the sun to shine on its face. I am awake because I am thinking of you, my new student.

I type with only the glow of the laptop's screen because I am excited for New School Year’s Day. Boundary changes mean that instead of pulling groups of students from 8 elementary schools, we can instead focus on 3. Now we can get to know not only you, your family, and your friends, but also the teachers who have nurtured you throughout the years. Oh, don’t be scared. I know that many of you started this year determined to reinvent your pre-teenaged self. Know this  -

I will NEVER prevent
   my students’ ability
      to reinvent

Getting to know you, your family, your friends, and your previous teachers will help me understand you, your worries, and the obstacles you face every day. Getting to know you, your family, your friends, and your teachers will help me understand your perspective, which will help me better educate you. This year you will continue to grow into the adult you will become. You will change your mind about who you are and what you want to be many times this year and throughout high school and college. My goal is to mold your writing skills that will help you search for that person you will become.

If you are not one already, you will become a writer. If you were a writer many years ago but forgot the joy of translating your chaotic thoughts into calm written words, I will remind you of that joy. Make no mistakes, this class will be difficult, but you will leave a better person and writer.

In this English class, we will dive into the difference between private thoughts and public posts so that you have the ability to reinvent yourself and not be tied down to one public image you accidently created or a stereotype that was forced upon you. You will be taught that not every one of your thoughts should be viewed in Facebook posts, Twitter tweets, phone text messages, or Snapchat images. I will teach you how to express your individuality while you create a positive online reputation within the safety of our school’s educational social media platform. Your future college recruiters and employers will search for you and find that you learned how to be a responsible digital citizen when you were a Compton JHS student.

The moon has moved a little bit higher in the sky and the sun is not even peeking over the eastern horizon yet. I am thinking of you at this moment and how New School Year’s Eve will be a great day. I also know that New School Year’s Day will be even better.

I look forward to meeting you, my new student writer.

Mrs. Scott

2013 Poem and Letter to My Students


I am asked why I care about my students.
  Why I choose to think positive in a cloud of grey.
  Why I put my heart into them.

"You can’t save them all!"
  "Did you hear what he did last year?"
  "I am a teacher. If she doesn’t want to learn, then she shouldn’t be in my class."

But I know I can’t save them all.
 I just won’t be the reason they fall.

don’t care what he did last year.
 I only care about what he does today and tomorrow.

  If she doesn’t want to learn, I must ask what can I do to change that?

I care about my students because
  Sometimes they don’t have someone who cares about them.
  Sometimes some students will someday remember that somebody cared.

I want to be that somebody.
 ~ Mrs. Jennifer Scott

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